WALNUT CREEK (CBS SF) — After a 19-hour bargaining session, Mt. Diablo Unified School District officials and the system’s teacher union announced Tuesday they have reached a tentative agreement to bring K-2nd grade students back into classrooms on a hybrid schedule beginning on March 25.

To become final, the deal will need to be ratified by the teaching rank and file and the district’s Governing Board, which is scheduled to meet on Tuesday night.

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Read The Entire MDUSD Return To Classroom Plan

Once ratified by both parties, district officials said they would move quickly to notify parents and implement reopening plans that have been long in development.

In a joint announcement, Dr. John Rubio, Chief of Human Resources, and MDEA President, Anita Johnson, expressed appreciation “for the tremendous amount of work that went into coming to an agreement.”

Under terms of the deal, students will be broken up into to cohorts with one group receiving life instruction on Monday and Tuesday and a second receiving live instructions on Thursday and Friday.

“No students shall have in-person Learning Support sessions on Wednesdays,” the deal states. “On school days their group is not on campus, students will work independently on work assigned by their teachers.”

COVID-19 safety protocols will be in place including social distancing and face masks.

“Face coverings are required to be worn properly, including over the nose and mouth, at all times by all individuals on a school campus, indoors or outdoors,” the deal states. “This applies to all students, all administrators, all bargaining unit members, all other employees, and any visitors on campus over the age of two (2).”

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Each school will also establish an exact supervised location where students can be picked up or released to their parent/guardian to go home.

Other details include having desks six feet apart, clear plastic barriers at teacher desks, hand-washing and sanitizing stations, and sanitizing all shared recreational equipment between uses.

“We’re basically rewriting how school is done. So, we have to have really clear language on how all the safety protocols will work,” Mt. Diablo Education Association President Anita Johnson. “We really appreciate the District that they have taken some steps addressing our safety concerns and has agreed to guarantees to undertake and sustain certain safety protocols.”

A MDUSD spokesperson would only say that the tentative agreement would remain tentative until ratified by the union and approved by the school board.

If approved, preschool through 2nd grade, along with special education, would start March 25. Students in grades 3 through 12 with hybrid learning would begin March 29.

 

Don Ford contributed to this report.

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